Hanging Tree image from Vicious Venues
In Shott's cemetery once was a stone that read in part "Reuben, Son of Daniel and Mary A. Briney Died June 2, 1863, Aged 17.Y 17.D - As you are now so once was I, As I am now so you will be; Remember me as you pass by, Prepare to die and follow me."
Pretty spooky all by itself, hey? It gets weirder.
Reuben was a broken hearted teen, and in his pain caused by love gone bad, he rode to a tree near the cemetery on his white steed. He put a noose around his neck, tossed and looped the other end of the rope around a branch, and spurred his horse forward. (Some say he met his fate accidentally, but what kind of spook story would that make?) Goodbye, vale of tears, hello, light on the other side.
If it were only so easy. It's claimed that he can be seen to this day riding on the hillside at night atop his white stallion with flaming red eyes, still searching for his lost love. And woe to those that see him; they're said to be doomed to die a horrible death, just like Reuben's.
Good luck trying to find his tombstone; the memorial was toppled and broken 35 years ago, and eventually hauled away. All that's left now is an unmarked footer, alleged to be near the infamous hanging tree.
So how do we know what it said? Because a photo of the broken stone and its inscription was part of Ford City HS 1974 yearbook, no doubt a reminder of the impetuousness and passion of youth.
"As you are now so once was I..."
(H&H gives big props to LC, his Philly spook sister, who dug up most of the story and the location in ways only she knows.)